Latest APD Communications News
Oct 8, 2021
UKHotViews NEC Software Solutions (NECSWS) has announced an extension to its contract to provide its NEC Connect core policing platform for the Athena programme. The deal, which was signed in March 2021, takes it out to 2029. Terms of the contract have not been disclosed. Athena is a collaborative programme and purchasing framework, which is led by the Athena Management Organisation—it currently includes nine forces. In 2011, when the £32m 10-year Athena contract was first awarded to NECSWS (then Northgate Information Solutions), there were seven founding members (Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, Essex, Kent, Norfolk, and Suffolk); Warwickshire and West Mercia joined the consortium in 2015. All nine forces are now live on the platform with the final force, Kent, going live in November 2019. NEC Connect Record Management System (RMS) is based on a single, shared POLE (Person, Object, Location and Events) store providing core intelligence, investigative management, custody and case preparation services, with a wide range of additional functions available via optional modules. The platform is currently used by 15 police forces in the UK: the nine Athena forces and six other territorial forces ( Metropolitan Police Service , West Midlands , South Yorkshire, Lancashire , Humberside and Northumbria ). Outside of the UK, the Isle of Man Constabulary and Jamaica’s Ministry of National Security are also NEC Connect customers. Securing the extension means the Athena forces can collaborate and make use of a single database of information across borders for another eight years. The recently announced agreement for NECSWS to acquire Capita's Secure Solutions and Services (SSS) business could present further opportunities for UK forces to collaborate via shared digital platforms. Given the limited funds and the borderless nature of crime, being able to collaborate effectively in a consistent manner is of vital importance to policing and forms a key component of the Policing Digital Strategy .